Internet of Things – Revolutionizing Retail Industry

By / January 11, 2018 /

Technology has already changes the retail landscape. The Internet of things is being employed on an increasing scale across all sectors to drive efficiencies and create new opportunities. Without Internet of Things (IoT), retail industry would have never been as it is now. The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to revolutionize the retail industry even further. From machine-to-machine (M2M) communication to printed electronics, the future of retail will offer smoother, faster, cleaner processes from setting prices to creating point-of-sale procedures. The Internet of Things is about to be the next big thing after the internet itself.

IoT is reshaping and revolutionizing the retail industry which capitulate progresses and new opportunities in customer service. Retailers are also taking advantage of the IoT in the form of iBeacon technology, which conveys modified messages to customers’ mobile devices based on micro-location. The IoT technology presents opportunity for retailers to understand the behavior and also facilitate sensitive customer engagement by assembling and allocating data on real-time location.

Internet of Things is helping businesses in numerous ways:

  • Operational cost is being reduced
  • Productivity is increasing
  • New channels for marketing has opened
  • Customer experience have become more personalized

How IoT is changing the Landscape for Retail Industry?

There are numerous innovative technologies, devices like sensors, beacons, RFID tags, QR Codes and many more that has considerably benefited the retailers and also the consumers. This helps in providing customers the smooth journeys as well as opportunity for the commerce, inventory tracking and virtual suggestions will be more accurate and effective.

1.) Customer Tracking

At the Fairson’s department store, managers can measure the number of people who walk past the store, the number who come through the front door – and this information includes whether or not they went in immediately or were convinced by the shopfront. Once shoppers are inside the store, managers can find out how many of them walked up to the second floor and compare with the number of people who took the journey to the second floor last week. The pervasiveness of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enables store owners to maximize their relationships with shoppers through personalized advertising. Another example could involve motion sensor cameras located at various strategic retail locations. This camera could for example detect when someone is standing at for example an array of tablets for a certain period of time.

2.) Offer improved in-store experience

Personalization in retail helps in generating revenue. Many retailers are already leveraging the IoT to enhance customer experience, with applications like IoT-connected digital signage providing targeted real-time updates, or engaging customers through interactive technology. Shopping is more of gaining a good experience more than just buying a product. IoT here is making this possible for the customers that feels like store can read their minds. Sensors on store shelves will dynamically relay low or out-of-stock inventory levels. RFID tags would easily tell at the exact moment where the product is located and whether the required size is available in the stock or not. Playing with hangers to find the size and the product has become old fashioned. IoT is changing the game providing benefits across all industries

3.) Prevention of Losses

Sensors are one of the most efficient ways IoT is being utilized for these immediate loss prevention objectives. Jewelry cases can be equipped with sensors to alert store employees if a case has been left open unattended. Motion activated sensors are designed to let associates know when a customer has entered the establishment or is in a particular area of the store. In-store stock levels can be measured with a combination of video and pressure sensor mats, giving retailers the capability to ward off would-be outside shoplifters and even internal employee theft. These sensors can also simply let management know when an item is out, therefore allowing ample time to restock, decrease the loss of sales, and increase customer loyalty.

4.) Supply chain and inventory management

There are already such IoT devices in the warehouses which provide the inventory manager an incredibly accurate measurement of demand. The major supply chain nightmares which all retailers are facing since so long for now are being overstocked and ending up with the washed out products, which could lead to the customer dissatisfaction and loss in the sales part. IoT hereby provide with the managing tool which help in getting rid of such problems. Most of the biggest names in logistics are now using IoT devices to provide highly accurate shipment tracking and delivery schedules. RFID tags or sensors in shelves can sense whether the stock is about to run out and accordingly send alert to the supplier or responsible party’s phone.

The transition of IoT can be a challenging process. With the transition of IoT, retailers will be able to offer customers what they actually want through a digital, related and modified experience. From reduction in the merchandise loss to the improved customer insight, IoT offers numerous advantages for retail industry as well as consumers. The retailers can spend more time doing important things such as resolving consumer concerns and providing them a warm shopping environment rather than concerning about the dull and monotonous tasks such as inventory out of the way.

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